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Thread: South Louisiana freeze question

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    South Louisiana freeze question

    First winter with our in-ground saltwater gunite pool, and we opted not to close it due to our southern location. Freeze protect has been kicking on for a few nights over the last week or so, but we are supposed to have a hard freeze tonight and this weekend as well (low should be 18 degrees overnight). My main question is this: we have three pool spitters that are run underground and come out in the concrete coping - should we turn the them on so that when the pump comes on water will periodically run through the lines or leave them off. Not sure what kind of risk we would be taking either way. The buried pipes should be okay, but I worry about the point where it come up towards the surface and through the concrete???? Any feedback on this would be appreciated!!!
    18' X 48" AG Vinyl - 5600 gallons (bestway)
    SWG (Intex)
    Cartridge filter (came with pool)
    Pump flow rate 1500 g/h

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: South Louisiana freeze question

    Quote Originally Posted by _scouter_
    First winter with our in-ground saltwater gunite pool, and we opted not to close it due to our southern location. Freeze protect has been kicking on for a few nights over the last week or so, but we are supposed to have a hard freeze tonight and this weekend as well (low should be 18 degrees overnight). My main question is this: we have three pool spitters that are run underground and come out in the concrete coping - should we turn the them on so that when the pump comes on water will periodically run through the lines or leave them off. Not sure what kind of risk we would be taking either way. The buried pipes should be okay, but I worry about the point where it come up towards the surface and through the concrete???? Any feedback on this would be appreciated!!!
    18 degrees is cold but I suspect the daytime high will be well above freezing, right? I don't have direct experience with spitters but Sacramento's winters are comparable to Louisiana. When we would get consecutive nights of sub-freezing temperatures I wondered whether my deck jets would be affected, but they never seemed to be. Often I would turn them on mid-day for a while, mostly so that the skinny 1.5" PVC pipes on the pad wouldn't harbor any latent crystals.

    This year I more or less abandoned freeze protection, but that's not necessarily my recommendation. In areas of the country that experience relatively mild overnight lows, a micro-climate could conceivably drop the temperature long enough to cause some freeze damage in above ground plumbing, especially if the freezing temps persist into the middle of the day or continue for many days. So one has to know the temperature of their immediate area in relation to local weather readings.
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
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    Re: South Louisiana freeze question

    My skimmer near my pool pump and dripping a little lately. It's enough by the end of the day to have a little puddle of water surrounding the pipes near the pump, booster pump, and filter. Not a whole lot though. Anyway.... since our low temp. tonight is suppose to be 23 and Friday night 17, is this going to affect my pipes where they go into the ground? (Oh, by the way, I have an inground pool). I have been told just to leave my pool pump on for four or five days until we get out of this freezing weather. But, I worry about the standing water near the pipes that come out of the ground right near the pump and filter. Is there anything I can do for that standing water? I thought about salt or something to absorb it. Would salt hurt those pipes near the spot where they go into the ground?
    15,000 gallon, Diamond Brite, Pentair Intelliflo VS 3050, 3/4 hp Hayward booster pump for Polaris cleaner, Tagleus filter 60D, no automation yet

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    polyvue's Avatar
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    Re: South Louisiana freeze question

    Quote Originally Posted by poodlegirl
    My skimmer near my pool pump and dripping a little lately. It's enough by the end of the day to have a little puddle of water surrounding the pipes near the pump, booster pump, and filter. Not a whole lot though. Anyway.... since our low temp. tonight is suppose to be 23 and Friday night 17, is this going to affect my pipes where they go into the ground? (Oh, by the way, I have an inground pool). I have been told just to leave my pool pump on for four or five days until we get out of this freezing weather. But, I worry about the standing water near the pipes that come out of the ground right near the pump and filter. Is there anything I can do for that standing water? I thought about salt or something to absorb it. Would salt hurt those pipes near the spot where they go into the ground?
    I don't think salt will hurt PVC pipe but I wouldn't want to leave that salt on concrete for weeks or months... If you have a wet-vac (shop vacuum designed to pick up both wet and solid material) you might be able to clear that area of water. Is this "standing" water less than an inch deep? Other options are using a straw or bristle broom to sweep it away from the equipment pad or just wicking it up with old towels, and so forth.

    Unless you're expecting noon-time temperatures to be hovering at or below freezing I don't think you'll need to have the pump/filter running 24/7. When it warms up in the morning you can turn it off until later in the evening when the temperature drops again. The pipes would have to be subjected to at least several hours of 23 degree F. air before the pool water inside actually solidified. There are however other actions you could take if you're very anxious about this: Apply insulating material to the most exposed above ground pipes: Armaflex / Armacell and other brands are stocked at home centers and hardware stores. You can purchase insulating tape and/or pipe insulation sleeves (sold in lengths by pipe diameter). When I did this 2 yrs ago I wasn't able to find on short notice pipe insulation big enough to wrap the 2 1/2 - 3 inch wide unions and elbows used for 2" plumbing, so I joined two smaller diameter pipe insulators (pre-slit) together and wrapped them with tape. Hope that helps.
    14,555 gal in-ground 16'x29' white plaster Pool w/spa (2007); Goldline Aqua Logic AQL-PS-8 control w/Aqua Cell 15 Salt Water Chlorination (SWCG); Hayward TriStar 1HP (1.85 SF) main / 1.5HP (1.60 SF) spa pumps; Hayward Swimclear cart filter C4025, ColorLogic LED lights; Tankless SP-18-4 electric heater; Polaris 280 cleaner.
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    View of spiral galaxy in Ursa Major NGC6217 - Hubble Telescope 2009

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    Re: South Louisiana freeze question

    Thanks Polyvue! The insulation thing sounds good but everywhere I went today was sold out. I hear it was like that all over town. I may try some salt but I wonder if sand would work just the same? Today it is suppose to warm up but Thursday is when it is suppose to start getting bad. They are talking the low Thursday 23; the low Friday night 17. It is suppose to start raining and sleeting Thursday night and/or Friday I believe. I had thought about covering equipment with various beach towels but was afraid of that pool motor sparking or something. I think the pool motor is what is leaking after I looked last night. I know it is time to change it now. But it was running fine and I thought I could get another month or so out of it. Now, I see I'm going to have to try and change it out asap as soon as this weather warms up! Thanks for your suggestions!
    15,000 gallon, Diamond Brite, Pentair Intelliflo VS 3050, 3/4 hp Hayward booster pump for Polaris cleaner, Tagleus filter 60D, no automation yet

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    Re: South Louisiana freeze question

    Salt would not "absorb" the water. Enough salt to seriously lower the freezing point of the puddle would be a lot of salt. Sand sounds like it would work better.
    --paulr
    BBB "Intermediate Swimmer"
    IG plaster pool 18.5K gal, Hayward Pro-Grid DE filter, 3/4 HP Hydramax II; Polaris 380, 3/4 HP booster
    AG spa 325 gal, probably Sundance of some kind
    Water testing instructions on one page

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